Peace brings tourists back to Lebanon

Even by the standards of the Middle East, Lebanon has had a rough time of it. A bitter civil war and periodic Israeli invasions have left much of the country in ruins, but now that order appears to be restored, the country’s tourism ministry is wooing visitors back.

Lebanon has a lot going for it–beautiful beaches, good skiing, fine dining, fantastic historical sights, and cheap accommodation. There are World Heritage Sites such as Qadisha Valley (pictured here), a lush region sheltering ancient Christian communities. Unlike much of the Middle East, alcohol is legal and there’s good nightlife. There once was a time when Beirut was the party town of the Mediterranean. Of course that was before Ford was president, but there’s always hope that it can be so again. Hey, why not?

According to a BBC report, hundreds of thousands of tourists have visited Lebanon this year and officials are hoping for two million tourists before the end of the summer. Not bad for a country with a population of only four million.

The country has been relatively stable recently, and if they can keep Hezbollah in line and avoid getting attacked by Israel again, travelers looking for a bargain will have another stop on their agenda.

I’ve seen Lebanon, but only from across the border in Syria! Have you been to Lebanon? Post your experiences in the Comments section.